Thursday, March 29, 2018

Naval Gaming at South Bay Game Club

For the past few months I have been participating in age of sail games run by Bob at the South Bay Game Club.  These were squadron level games with each person commanding three to six ships.  Attendance had been low over the winter months and the games usually had me playing against Bob in two of the three games.   I ended up losing one of the three and winning the other two.  For the March meeting I ran the Battle of Cheetos (Chios) using modified Corvus rules from the Society of Ancinets.   Cheetos are corn chips and when Manny's son heard saw the bag of chips and heard the name of the battle that is what he called it.   Manny commanded the Pergamon fleet, Bob commanded the Rhodian fleet, and Craig commanded the Macedonian fleet with my assistance.  I used the scenario from the GMT board game War Galley, but scaled them at one to one instead of one to three as in the scenario with the Lembis being scaled at one to two and a half.  The Macedonians were also given the one twelve that I had, the Astro Thanatou. 

The Pergamon fleet had thirty-six ships, mostly fives with three threes.   Rhodes had forty-two ships with thirty-three fives and the rest threes.   The Macedonian fleet had three tens, one nine, four eights, three sevens, three sixes, eighteen fives, eighteen fours, three threes, and sixty lembis representing the 150 present at the battle along with the twelve.  The Rhodian fleet was well trained while the others were average.

Both sides were allowed to deploy as they wished, up to six inches in from the table edge with the only restriction being that Pergamon was on the allied left flank and Rhodes was on the allied right flank.

The first two turns saw the fleets approach each other.  On turn three the allies moved first and decided to attempt bow to bow rams against the Macedonians.  This did not turn out well.  Only four Macedonian ships were wrecked, while twelve of the thirty-six Pergamon ships were wrecked.   Under the game rules this would have been an immediate rout for the Pergamon fleet with a third of the fleet lost except that the Pergamon admiral's ship had not been involved and counted as two ships for a total of thirty-seven.  On my flank the two fleets only approached.   On the fourth turn there were some bow to bow ramming attempts by the Rhodian fleet.   These were not as destructive as the earlier attacks by the Pergamon fleet.  On my half of the turn the lembis passed through the gaps between my larger ships and attempted to shear the oars of the opposing fleet.  Ten of the attempts were successful with only a few failures.  On turn five Craig was able to sink an additional Pergamon ship winning the battle.   At this point victory went to the Macedonians as the Pergamon ships that were not crippled fled.   Only part of the Rhodian fleet was able to escape as almost half of their ships had been crippled by oar shears and many others were wrecks.

We used a 30 inch (75cm) by eight foot (2.4m) table.

 Bob, wearing red cap, Manny, and Craig 
 End of Allies' first turn.  Macedonian fleet on the left.
 End of second turn. 
 The Pergamon fleet attacks
 end of turn three
turn five.  My lembis have passed through attempting oar shears on the first line during turn four.   On turn five we moved first and the lembis attempted oar shears on the Rhodian second line, often having two of them ganging up on one Rhodian ship. Ships with a square blue marker behind them have been crippled. Those with the larger rectangular markers are wrecks.  The ships have been removed.  I did capture one ship with a boarding action.